It’s only been recently that I have realized the power of rest for women over 50. Did you know that rest is a key ingredient to success, health and happiness? Well, I want all of these things and am willing to embrace a new rhythm to get there.
Let’s Define Rest
In the Oxford Dictionary rest is defined as follows:
- Rest (verb) – to cease work or movement in order to relax, refresh or recover strength.
- Rest (noun) – an instance or period of relaxing or ceasing to engage in strenuous or stressful activity.
We live in a world that is full of hustle and bustle with constant connection to our phones. This can take a toll on your body and mind especially as you age.
Relaxation simply won’t happen on its own. We must set aside time to do things we enjoy and spend time with the people we love. Rest may look different in each person. Some might choose to sit and read, while others may take a walk outside to relax. My personal preference is a good nap!
What The Experts Say
According to a lovely article in Forbes.com, our bodies were designed to work best in intervals. Allowing yourself to take breaks, even short ones, promotes health and allows you to continue working throughout the day.
We all know that stress is bad! It also impacts our need for rest. High stress levels create the fight or flight response and can be hard on the immune system. Resting allows the body to return to a more calm state.
The power of rest benefits us with increased creativity. Resting naturally makes you more creative. Taking time to relax refills you and makes room for reflection and inspiration to be birthed.
Every day I play word games to keep my brain sharp. When I have trouble with a puzzle, I walk away and take a break. When I come back, I am always able to solve it. Taking a minute to change my focus, breathe and relax makes all the difference.
Productivity and Decision Making
Let’s just call it what it is … you simply do not function at your best when you are tired. This means you are not as productive and your decisions might be a little shaky!
Planning important tasks after a period of rest is a great way to stay productive. And, we all know that the phrase “let me sleep on it”, is the best answer when making significant decisions.
It’s amazing how different things look after a good night’s sleep. A fresh perspective will give you the confidence to make good and sound decisions in business and personally. This is truly the power of rest in action.
Ways To Practice Rest
Okay, not everyone can just take a nap in the middle of the day. However, there are ways to incorporate healthy rest habits into your schedule. Here are some things you can do immediately:
- Make appointments to rest in your schedule. During that time, practice gratitude. These positive thoughts will help your perspective.
- Practice deep breathing. I love this one because you can do it anywhere. I have a health app the prompts deep breathing exercises. Not only will this help you relax, but it exercises and strengthens your lung capacity.
- Get enough sleep. Having a regular bedtime and a routine will help you get the restful sleep your body needs to recover.
I admit that I do love a good nap and for me, that is what my body needs. Because I get up early to exercise on weekdays, by 1:00p.m., I am in need of some rest.
My body may not be running at the same pace as ten years ago, but I have found the rhythm that works for me. I still do all the things I love, including regular exercise, managing the house and social involvement, it’s just done at a different pace.
Silent Charlie loves our routine the best! I simply say “okay boy, let’s go “rest and reset!” and he happily joins me on the couch, our favorite napping spot.
Embrace the power of rest and listen to your body. Taking the time to take care of yourself will help you remain your “Best Self”!